Rachel Whitlark

Associate Professor

Member Of:
  • School of International Affairs
  • Center for International Strategy, Technology, and Policy
Office Location: Habersham 218
Related Links:


Rachel is a political scientist and associate professor of international affairs. Her interests lie within international security and foreign-policy decision-making, specifically including nuclear proliferation, counter-proliferation, and military intervention. Much of her work investigates the role of the individual executive in foreign and security policy. Her book, All Options on the Table: Leaders, Preventive War, and Nuclear Proliferation, published in 2021 by Cornell University Press, explores the use of preventive military force as a counter-proliferation strategy against adversarial nuclear programs and relies on archival research techniques. Additional projects examine the targeting of nuclear scientists as a counter-proliferation strategy, the determinants of arms control negotiation success, and presidential beliefs about nuclear coercion. Prior to coming to Georgia Tech, she held fellowships with the Project on Managing the Atom and International Security Program within the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, as well as with the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Security Studies Program. She received her Ph.D. in Political Science from the George Washington University, holds a master’s degree from Stanford, and a B.A. also from George Washington. Rachel is originally from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Areas of
  • Executive Decision Making
  • International Security
  • Nuclear Proliferation
  • Nuclear Weapons
  • U.S. Foreign Policy


Research Fields:
  • Clean Energy
  • Emerging Technology and Security
  • Global Nuclear Security
  • International Security Policy
  • Science, Technology, and International Policy
  • Asia (East)
  • Middle East
  • United States
  • Weapons and Security
  • Foreign Policy
  • National Security
  • National Strategy
  • Presidential Power
  • Science and Technology
  • Strategy


  • INTA-2120: Intro to Intl Security
  • INTA-3102: Problem of Proliferation
  • INTA-3110: U.S. Foreign Policy
  • INTA-4500: INTA Pro-Seminar
  • INTA-6002: Strategic Decisions
  • INTA-6111: US Foreign Secur Strat
  • INTA-6720: Politics Tech Prolif